The perfect homeschool plan is not elusive. In fact, it is easy to create the perfect plan for your family if you begin by considering the needs of your family, considering your limitations as a homeschool teacher, and avoiding common pitfalls.
Planning means following a series of prescribed steps that will ensure that you have a plan that is going to work.
It may seem time-consuming, but none of these steps are particularly difficult to do and the payoff will be a homeschool that will run itself with only a little daily maintenance to keep it going through the year.
People ask me how much time I spend planning each week during the school year and the answer is – I don’t. Once the annual plan is in place, all I do is fill out spiral notebooks each day. That takes about five minutes per child. Really! My homeschool runs on autopilot and yours can too.
You can read or listen to this post.
Here are the steps you need to take:
1. Step One: Create a Vision
Before you even begin thinking about the other steps of your plan consider what education even looks like at your house.
2. Step Two: Write Effective Goals
Now that you know what you want education to be, think about each of your children and what you would like each of them to learn this year. Do they need to master math facts, learn to read, learn to write a research paper or a persuasive essay? List those things here to keep you focused in your planning for the year.
3. Step Three: Determine a Course of Study
Once your goals are in place you can turn your attention to which subjects you are going to study this year. List those out per student and start thinking about the curriculum and resources you will buy to study each subject.
4. Step Four: Consider Your Scheduling Options
How many days does your school year need? Will you try year-round schooling, tidal homeschooling, schooling that aligns with the calendar year? As homeschoolers, we have a number of options for an annual schedule.
5. Step Five: Plan a Week
Once you know your schedule you can begin to plan what a week looks like in your home. Consider your outside obligations. Will you school four or five days a week? Will you do specific subjects on specific days or follow a loop schedule?
Watch me use the homeschool planning steps here
6. Step Six: Create Procedure Lists
Create any needed procedure lists to make subjects open and go.
7. Step Seven: Create Lesson Plan Lists
Create more detailed lesson plan lists for the subjects that require them, but don’t date them.
8. Step Eight: Organize Your Materials
Now is the time to put the finishing touches on your schoolroom organization and create a space where your family can learn and thrive. This doesn’t mean a Pinterest-perfect space, but instead a space that works for your unique needs.
This is the place where you make and file your copies for the entire year so that everything is at your fingertips when you need it. You can also stock up on sketchbooks, science experiment supplies, and books.
9. Step Nine: Visualize Your School Day
How will your days unfold? Try to anticipate parts of the plan you may have forgotten.
10. Step Ten: Review Periodically
Every quarter or so revisit the parts of your plan to be sure they are still working.
The good news is, once you have considered and planned for each step listed above there is nothing left to do (except execute, of course). Even the execution is easier, though, with such a well-made plan. 🙂
To help you out I have a downloadable checklist of all ten steps. You can check off each one as you work, and put the perfect homeschool plan for your family in place to have a wonderful school year. Get yours now.